Tesla Model 3 gets fancy physical buttons with this Indiegogo accessory

Ever wished the Tesla had more physical buttons? The massive displays that adorn all Tesla models are beautiful to look at but can be tedious to drive. And while Tesla cars offer voice commands, they leave a lot to be desired: the Tesla will often misunderstand you, and some pretty obvious commands, like changing the acceleration mode, just don’t work.

A gadget funded by Indiegogo called Ctrl-Bar(Opens in a new window)created by a Norwegian startup called Greenmission(Opens in a new window), wants to change that. It is a two button, two button bar that can be placed under the Tesla Model 3/Y display and provides easy access to commonly used functions. For example, the knobs allow you to easily change your car’s temperature, while the programmable buttons can be used for a range of functions such as: B. switching on and off the heated seats, defrost mode or dog mode.

Greenmission is not without experience; The company currently sells a wireless charger for the Tesla Model S and X. Just like this charger, the Ctrl-Bar connects to the car with a hidden USB cable. On the other hand, the Ctrl bar only works with Tesla Model 3 and Y; the Model S and X are not mentioned in the Indiegogo campaign.


Remember that video from 2016 of a Tesla driving itself? It was staged.

The Ctrl bar is designed to look like a natural extension of Tesla’s display, but it doesn’t communicate directly with the car. Instead, it uses a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) connection to talk to your phone, which needs to be running the Greenmission app and connected to the internet. When you click a button or turn a knob, the command is first sent to your phone, which then communicates with the Tesla API to get the car to place your bids.

This brings us to what is potentially the most problematic aspect of the Ctrl bar: the inevitable delay between issuing a command and actually executing it on the car’s display. Greenmission partially solved this by incorporating a display on the Ctrl bar that immediately shows the result of your action, while the actual command should be executed by the car in “less than a second”. When clicking buttons and rotating knobs one by one, “less than a second” can be a pretty long wait, but we’ll see how this works in real life once the ctrl bar is finalized (it’s currently under development ). .

The Ctrl bar brings other benefits, such as: B. Additional LED lighting for your car, speed trap warnings and possibly more, as Greenmission says new features will be made available via over-the-air updates.

The project has currently raised just over $18,000 with a modest firm goal of $27,216, and it has 20 days left to reach that goal. If you’re interested, you can support the project and purchase the Ctrl bar (when it becomes available) for $260.

The Ctrl Bar isn’t the first accessory of its kind; the S3XY keys(Opens in a new window), for example, are similar, albeit with far fewer options. However, the Ctrl bar looks so natural under the Model 3/Y’s display that one wonders why Tesla didn’t include a set of physical buttons from the start. Tesla Model 3 reviewers have long complained about the lack of physical buttons; An early review by Consumer Reports said the car’s touchscreen can cause driver distraction, since “every action forces drivers to take their eyes off the road and one hand off the wheel.” The number of physical buttons in Tesla Model 3 and Y has remained unchanged since launch, but perhaps an accessory like the Ctrl Bar can alleviate this issue for some drivers.

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